TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Welcome to the Cooper Lab.
"I really like helping other people and seeing what can be done in society especially around Tucson."
Meet Madison Goforth, a senior at the University of Arizona. Her interest in forensic science lead her here. "I decided I wanted go down towards the industry-academia route and study more about microbiome or bacterial communities on or in the gut or in soil as well as foods," said Goforth.
Foods like melons and dark leafy greens. "California and Arizona are actually the top two producers for the United States for dark leafy greens as well as melons so they're very important to study," said Goforth.
For her second major in food and nutrition systems, she knew wanted to help people with their diet. "Just to be able to give tips for other people about what they could be lacking in their diet because having a well-balanced nutritious diet is important," said Goforth.
Goforth said her days are long. She starts around 6 in the morning and goes till 7:30 at night, but she even makes time to volunteer. "At the moment, I'm doing an internship through the community food bank garden and what I've realized is a lot of people like to garden now especially after the pandemic," said Goforth.
While hard at work at the University of Arizona, her father passed away during her junior year at the height of the pandemic. "So, when you actually stop eating, you just don't get any nutrients. So, that's what ended up happening with my father and after that I tried to make a better connection with my family to get them to see other foods as better options," said Goforth.
She said it was her family and friends that helped her keep going. "Just like reassuring me that I can get it done and I'm a hard worker. That way I could be able to achieve being able to work on his estate while attending college and doing work," said Goforth.
Now the day is almost here, graduation."I think I'm excited to be able to graduate and then continue doing my masters. So, at the moment I'm in the accelerated masters program for microbiology studying microbiomes on melons," said Goforth.
All in hopes of making a difference. "Just so that people can live and still eat food without having to risk it," said Goforth. She added that eventually she wants to get a PhD in microbiology and food safety in Europe to see how they're able to approach different problems from another perspective.
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